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Does the Potential Energy increase during Chemical Bonding?

  1. Jan 3, 2019 #1


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    Gold Member

    Hi All,
    The Potential Energy for two chemically bonding atoms is defined by ,U=1/2(k*q1*q2)/r

    So it means that when the atoms approach each other then, their Potential Energy will increase.
    Where am I doing wrong?

    I will be thankful for help!
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 3, 2019 #2


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    Science Advisor

    Who defines it like that? What are q1 and q2? The charges? Atoms are neutral.

    The potential energy decreases in bonding, but to understand why you need to know something about quantum mechanics, and atomic and molecular orbitals. Have you studied this?
  4. Jan 3, 2019 #3
    Is that always the case?
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